Friday, June 10, 2011

Roanoke’s 1st Civil rights & Social Justice Leadership Award & Recognition Program

Civil rights & Social Justice Leadership Award Honorees

A unique two day event consisted of the lst civil Rights Leadership Program on Saturday 5/28/11 & the 2nd Restoration of Voter Rights for Ex-Offenders On Sunday 5/29/11.


Submitted by Deborah Saunders, Event Coordinator

These two events stirred a lot of excitement and hope in the community. On Saturday, 110 of the 170 pre-registered people actually attended, and it was packed tight in the auditorium at the Dumas Cultural & Artistic Center on 108 Henry Street NW, Roanoke, VA 24016

The program started promptly & lasted from 2 – 4:30 PM.

The audience was an excellent, excited, & very supportive crowd, who took everything in stride. Rev. Dr. Mack Craighead graciously allowed Rev. William A. Keene, the state president for S.C.L.C. to speak in his place.

Both Rev. Dr. E.T. Burton Rev.Dr. William A. Keene gave such dynamic, charismic, and awesome speeches, they received standing ovations, cheers, & tears.

The crowd also applauded when Maj. Saunders explained the honorees were selected with random community surveys, polls, community research, feedback/knowledge of actual civil rights & social justice work, and repeated request from the community at large.

She appropriately dubbed the group of honorees for 2011 as “The People’s Choice,” by popular community demand. She also informed the audience that the selected 14 honorees did not reflect all of the Civil Rights and Social Justice leaders in the community and informed them that this was the lst, but wouldn’t be the last program.

More leaders will be recognized in the future. Her speech also received shouts of approval, cheers, and claps of approval. The crowd was thrilled when they were also reminded by Maj. Saunders that this event is a historical event and each of them was making history on a local, statewide and national level.

The entire musical program that Saturday night was provided by the very talented Dr. Perneller Chubb-Wilson who also received standings ovation on her patriotic musical selection. These prestigious national level award from the PDAVA (Progressive Democrats America (Virginia) was presented to each of the 14 recipients on stage by the congressional assistant, PDAVA member Andrea Miller. The Honorees were: Councilman Sherman Lea, Sr. who received The Lion of Social Justice Legislative Award specific for elected officials only.

The rest of the honorees each received the Civil Rights Leadership and Activism Awards and they were: Mr. Jeff Artis, Ms. Evelyn Davis Bethel, Ms. Mary Beth Brooks, Mr. Herman Carter, Attorney John Fishwick, Ms. Alease Frazier, Mr. Mac McCadden, SGT(Ret) Sheila Mitchell-Patterson, MAJ(Ret)Deborah Saunders, A. Byron Smith, Rev. Carl Tinsley, Ms. Brenda Walker, Dr. Perneller Chubb-Wilson.

Rev. Carl Tinsley did the Benediction & the entire audience met down stairs and enjoyed the food provided by Dr. Frank Cotter, Food lion & Kroger.

The guest, family members, friends were all so excited & well aware that their presence contributed to the success of a landmark historical event here.

In Roanoke, Virginia- the honorees were hugged, kissed, and congratulated. Everyone hated to leave but we all departed with full stomachs & happy for the chosen Iconic leaders who made this a historical memorial weekend.

Restoration of Voter’s Right Townhall

On Sunday 5/29/11 The 2nd Restoration of Voter’s Right Townhall

was held from 2- 4:30pm also at the Dumas 2nd floor Auditorium/theatre.

Councilman Sherman Lea Sr., Andrea Miller, Dr. Melva Belcher, Helen Dean, Chairlady for the Social Action & Political Awareness Committee For Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Mr. Durwin Bonds, Sheila Mitchell_

Patterson, Deborah Saunders, & Mignon Chubb- Hale provided information, speeches, and gave job information, door prizes, & assistance to ex-felons with the completion of their paper work to be submitted to Governor McDonnell for consideration of having their voting rights restored. The reception again provided a lot of food to all who attended.

I sincerely thank the Roanoke city police officers & everyone who was honored for accepting & attending, the wonderful audience, our friends, Families, organizational supporters, sponsors, for both days. & Bishop Mitchell, the SCLC radio, & Carter G. Radio show for helping us to educate, invite the public and for supporting our two day event.


Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Community, Local Events

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